Codrington Alban Walcott ~ An Amazin’ Man & An Amazin’ Father Who Was Very Much Way Ahead of His Time ~ And ~ Is A True Inspirational Hero of The Windrush Generation
A Windrush Generation & Father’s Day Special ~ June 2022
Born In Barbados And Yet Servin’ In The British Navy. Learning To Play Classical Music By Ear. Mozart In Particular. And Raising ‘5’ Small Children Alone After Cancer Stole His Wife From Him Whilst They Were Both Only In Their Thirties. Codrington Alban Walcott Was A Man Ahead of His Time.
And He Was An Exceptional Shining Example of The Determination, Dedication, And Resilience of The Windrush Generation.
His Amazin’ Story Has Now Been Told In A New Book By Those Closest To Him, The Five Children He Fought The System To Keep, After Fightin’ For Both “King And Country” & ‘Queen And Country’ ~ And Leavin’ His Own Caribbean Country.
Honouring Their Parents
In A New Book Called ‘Through Their Eyes’ Written By His Only Daughter Jeanette Thompson (Nee Walcott) With Contributions, Support And The Spiritual Presence of Her Brothers, Comes An Amazin’ Story of Loss, Love, More Loss, And Lots And Lots And Lots of Perserverance Is Brought To Life And Gives The World A Series of Inspirin’, Movin’ And Game-Changin’ Life Lessons.
It Is A Hommage To Both Codrington And His Beautiful Wife, Carmen Leotta Walcott, Who Was Taken Prematurely, But Who Is Very Much Included In The Book By The Children.
Jeanette Told TheOrator.Press Online Magazine The Title “Codrington Alban Walcott: Through The Eyes Of Their Children” Is Giving Hommage Also To Our Beautiful Mother Carmen Leotta Walcott. She Made Many Sacrifices In Her Short Life And It Was Imperative For Me To Include Her. We Are The Product Of Two Beautiful People And Her Legacy Was Also Not To Be Forgotten. Hence The Word ‘Their’ Instead of’ His’. Plus It Was From All The Siblings Perspectives.”
After Serving In The British Navy, C.A.W. Accepted The UK Government’s Appeal For Help Rebuildin’ Post War Britain. Temporarily Seperating From His Family, He Came To Britian To Work On The Buses. By Working Extremley Hard, Within A Year He Saved Enough To Buy A House & Send For His Family, Whereupon They Were Reunited.
The Story of How His Life Turned Out For Him, As Told Through The Eyes of His Children. Particularly Jeanette, Who We Can Safely Say Was A Daddy’s Girl, As Well As A Tom Boy (Due To Always Playin’ With Her Brothers) Is The Stuff of Movies.
Determination! Dedication! Resilience!
This Is The Story of An Exceptional Man. He Was Ahead of His Time. He Raised Five Children alone. He Had To Fight off The System To Keep Them. He Also Fought off His Family In The Caribbean Who Wanted To Take Them. And He Never Took Another Woman After His Wife Passed, Until Those Children Were Fully Grown And Finally Old Enough To Leave Home.
Why? Well, Coldrington Alban Walcott Was A Man of Integrity, Substance And Honour. And He Was Dedicated To His Family. What Was Left of It. Plus Tragically, He Lost His Own Father When He Was Just 13. He Knew Emotional Pain. Firstly He Suffered When His Father Died Just As He Reached The First of His Transformative Teenage Years. And Then Again When Cancer Stole His Wife When They Were Both Young Parents In Their Thirties. So No Doubt The Pain of Losin’ His Children Would Have Been Too Much To Bear. Furthermore He Did Not Want His Children To Suffer The Same Unimaginable Pain He Must Have Suffered Havin’ Lost A Beloved Parent Prematurely.
It’s An Amazin’ Story Worthy of A Movie. But On Windrush Day June 2022 We Had The Honour of His Only Daughter Jeanette Givin’ A Special Readin’ of His Special Story, In Person, Before An Exclusive Invitation Only Windrush Day Celebration Crowd. It Was Windrush Day Wednesday June 22nd 2022. And It Was Just A Few Days After Fathers Day Sunday June 19th 2022. So It Was Very Poignant, Movin’ And Fittin’.
The Windrush Legacy Association Held A Special Day of Windrush Celebrations Wednesday June 22 2022 At The Croydon Whitgift Centre
Codrington Alban Walcott Top Left, The Windrush Ship 1948, Windrush Generation, The British Nationality Act 1948, President Abraham Lincoln (Who Bears An Uncanny Likeness To Codrington (‘Honest Abe’ The Father of Emancipation And ‘Committed Codrie’ The Widowed Father To Five Young Children), And Finally, The Windrush Generation Association Logo)
The First Official UK Windrush Day Was Commorated On June 22 2018. It Celebrated The 70th Anniversary of Caribbeans Disembarkin’ HMT (His Majesty’s Troop Ship) Empire Windrush, At Tilbury Docks, Essex, In 1948.
The Mission of The Windrush Generation Legacy Association Is To Achieve This By Due Recognition of The Windrush Generation, Their Descendant’s, And The Great, Unique, And Rich Cultural History They Have Bestowed On Great Britain. They Seek To Achieve That By Official Acknowledgement, Appreciation And Accentuation of Their Diverse Legacy. The Vision of The Charity Is Greater Awareness of That Generation’s Historic Experiences, Contributions And Excellence. And Achievin’ That Through Informative, Collaborative, Inspirational, And Educational Activities, Events And Projects.
To This End, Contributing On This Year’s Windrush Day Was A Member of The Association’s Operational Team, Desmond Thompson, Who Introduced An Invitation Only Exclusive Crowd Celebratin’ Windrush Day 2022, To His Wife, Jeanette. ‘Des’ As He Is Known, Is Jamaican And His Wife Is Bajan. This Made For Some Cultural Humour As Des Is Quite A Character. This He Knows As He Shared The Fact That This Jamaican Bajan Marital Pact Has Been Happily Operatin’ For Over Forty Years. A More Serene Mrs Thompson Then Duly Gave A Readin’ From Her Book Dedicated To Her Father. It Is Called ‘Through Their Eyes”. And Then Our Eyes Were Opened.
Jeanette Is Naturally Beautiful, Creative, Warm And Expressive. Now In Her Sixties, Havin’ Raised Children of Her Own, She Remains Attractive, Active, And On The Case. She Takes An Interest In Psychology, Art, Writing, Storytellin’ And Poetry. Nonetheless She Was Also Naturally A Little Nervous On The Day, When Her Big Moment Came. And For A Tense Moment or Two, At One Stage She Lost Her Way Through Her Personally Selected Pages With Poignant Passages From Her Book. But The Audience Were Already Gripped By What She Had Read So Far And Was Patient Whilst Quietly Willin’ Her On To Recover And Continue, Which She Did. And It Was Worth It. Her Story, Or Rather Her Father’s Story Continued To Be Grippin’. As Well As Movin’ And Magical.
His Daughter Did Him Proud, Just As Her Father Did For Her And Her Brothers Throughout Their Childhoods. The Family Were Close Until The Day He Died. And They Remain Close As Siblings Even After His Passing. It’s A Beautiful Thing! Coldrington Alban Walcott Is A Windrush Man That Made A Supreme Difference In This World.
Over The Last Two Years Society Has Seen Some Serious Positive Groundbreakin’ Changes, Largely Due To The Covid Pandemic And The Call For Social Justice Followin’ The Shockin’ Police Murder of George Floyd Caught On Camera By A Young, Brave, Bystander, Teenager. They Were The Two World Changin’ Events of 2020. And The Momentum of That Time Has Seen Many People Make Significant Changes In Their Lives. Between Then And Now Jeanette Moved House. Famously One of The Most Stressful Things People Can Do In Their Life.
But For Jeanette It Was Positive. Because The Move Inspired In Her A Hitherto Untapped Desire To Write The Story of Her Late Father. The Book Was Written By September 2021. And Her Brothers Made Contributions. Peter (One of Her Twin Brothers) Would Be With Her Spiritually As He, Like His Mother, Was Taken Prematurely, By Cancer. At 62 He Died The Same Age As His Father.
The Story Is A Great Read About An Amazin’ Man Who In So Many Ways Was Ahead of This Time, Which He May or May Not Have Been Aware of In The Moment (Bein’ A Honourable Yet Humble Man Probably Not). But We Should Be. And Thanks To His Daughter’s Book “Coldrington Alban Walcott: Through Their Children’s Eyes” We Are Now.
Coldrington Raised Five Children Who Were Very Young When Their Mother Died From Cancer:
The Twins ~ Andrew And Peter Just 12 At The Time
Geoffrey ~ Just 10 At The Time
Jeanette ~ Just 7 At The Time
And Carlton (Carlie) ~ Just 3 At The Time
With The Exception of Carlie (Not Yet Conceived At The Time) They Had All Travelled Over From Barbados, By Boat – And Were At Sea For Three Weeks. Their Father Had Made Enough Money In One Year Workin’ For London Transport To Buy A House And Send For His Wife And Kids To Come Join Him In England. Six Years Later Their Mother Was Taken From Them By Cancer.
Now We Have Mens Groups Such As DOPE DADS https://www.dopedads.org/ And Fathers 4 Justice https://www.fathers-4-justice.org/ but Back Then Codrie Had No One. But He Fought And Won. As A Black Man, Who Came To England As A Caribbean Immigrant In The 50s, That Was No Small Feat. He Beat off Social Services To Hang On To His Kids And Raise Them Alone. He Never Even Took Another Woman As His Own To Help Him (As Is Common).
Jeanette Is Particularly Grateful For That, As She Openly Admitted To TheOrator.Press That Such A Woman, Any Woman Brought Into The House In Order To Fill Her Mother’s Role Would Not Have Been Welcome. Despite Bein’ A Tom Boy, Due To The Fact She Loved Bein’ With Her Brothers, She Was Also A Daddy’s Girl, So Perhaps He Sensed She Would Not Be Happy If He Brought A New Woman Into The House.
But Whatever The Reason, Coldrington, Made Sure Nobody Was Goin’ To Come Between Him And His Kids Who He Even Fought Family Back Home To Keep, As They Insisted The Children Should Be Sent Back To Barbados To Be Raised By Women In The Family In The Caribbean.
The Concept of A Man Raising Just One Child Alone Was So Novel That In 1987 Hollywood Produced A Film Comedy Three Men And A Baby Starring Three of Hollywood’s Leadin’ Men At The Time Tom Selleck (AKA Magnum PI), Ted Danson (of Cheers Fame) And Steve Guttenburg (Police Academy). That Is The High Level of Pullin’ Power Hollywood Felt It Needed For Viewers To Even Begin To Believe In The Concept. of Men Raisin’ Children Alone.
The Movie Three Men And A Baby Was Such A Success The Roles Were Reprised Three Years Later In 1990 With The Sequel ‘Three Men And A Little Lady’. It Made Over $70 Million Dollars At The Box Office.
For Codrie The Concept Was Real Life. Times Five!
Again, This Helps Highlights How Ahead of His Time Codrington Was, As A Modern Man And As A Lovin’ Father.
To Sacrifice One’s Life For The Sake of The Family Is To Know True LoveColrington Alban Walcott (Codrie), Late Father of Five
Whilst He Never Took Another Wife Until The Kids Were Old Enough To Leave Home, The Book Includes Some Funny or Movin’ Stories About The Various Tenants He Rented A Room Too In Order To Supplement His Income And The People He Relied On To Help With The Child Mindin’ And Hair-Combin’ (One of Which In Particular Is Very Powerful And Poignant). These Stories Are Incidental But Actually Worth The Read In Their Own Right, For Their Own Different Reasons.
Serving Two Monarchs ~ For King & Country ~ & ~ For Queen & Country
Photo Gallery: Clockwise From Centre, The Royal Navy Flag, The British Royal Coat of Arms, The Queen, Female Sea Cadet Leader: Barriteau-Haynes, Her Husband: Male Sea Cadet Leader Barriteau-Haynes, The Jamaican Flag, The Bajan Flag, The Union Jack, A British Navy Action Photo, King George VI. ~
Amazingly, Jeanette Was To Meet The Queen Durin’ Her Workin’ Life As A Secretary For A Big Computer Company In The 1970s. The Company ICL (International Computers Ltd) Set Up A Big Computer HQ In Putney When Computers Were In Their Infancy And Having New Ones Was A Very Big Deal. So Much So That Upon The Announcement of Their New Technological Acquisitions The Queen Paid A Royal Visit. Years Later ICL Was Overtaken By IBM (International Business Machines Corportion) Who Outlasted Them And Are Still Goin’ Today. Jeanette Still Has Her Invitation To Meet The Queen At ICL’s Rather Regal Technological Launch.
In Addition To Exceptionality of Raisin’ Five Children Alone, As Man, In Particular A Black Man In A Foreign Land, In The 1960s, Havin’ Fought Off Social Services, There Is Also The Fact That Codrington, As A Bajan, Had Previously Joined The British Royal Navy Prior To Raisin’ His Family.
Barbados Has Recently Become A Republic (November 2021) And Is No Longer Under The Sovereign of The British Royal Family, With The Queen As Head of State, As A Constitutional Monarcy. Instead Now It Is Parliamentary Republic With A Prime Minister, Under The Premiership of Sandra Mason. And Also A Ceremonial President.
“The Time Has Come To Fully Leave Our Colonial Past Behind. Barbadians Want A Barbadian Head of State.”Sandra Mason, New Prime Minister of Barbados
Now, In Barbados, Since 1979 The Barbados Defence Force (The BDF) Is An Amalgamation of The Three Main National Armed Services of Barbados. Namely The Barbados Regiment (Army Formed 1948), The Barbados Airwing And Barbados Coast Guards Who Protect Against Traffickin’, Smugglin’, Illegal Immigration, Illegal Fishin’ And Also Carry Out Search And Rescue Missions. However Historically Black Servicemen Were Treated With Rampent Racism, Disrespect And Contempt Within The British Armed Forces (Which They Could Join As Members of The British Empire Countries).
Their Official Status Was Seperate To White Soliders And They Were Considered Merely Auxillary or Volunteers. This Is Also Reflected In The Fact That Detailed History Books or Records On Their Service Is Very Scarce. Codrington Will Have No Doubt Had To Deal With All That. But He Still Held His Head High And Was Proud To Have Served Both “King And Country” And “Queen And Country.” Not Only Did He Serve One Monarch. He Actually Served Two.
When The Windrush Boat Came To England In 1948 King George VI Was On The Throne, As He Was When Codrington Joined The British Navy. When He Came To England In 1956, To Join The London Transport Service As Part of The Post War Effort, Queen Elizabeth II Was On The Throne And Just Three Years On From Her Coronation. Indeed Earlier This Month She Celebrated Her 70th Jubilee Havin’ Ascended The Throne Upon Her Father’s Death February 6th 1952.
There Have Since Been Some Excellent Documentaries On The Poor Treatment of Black British Servicemen Includin’ For Instance By Politician David Lammy And Historian David Olusuga. https://www.channel4.com/programmes/unremembered-britains-forgotten-war-heroes And The Royal Navy https://www.royalnavy.mod.uk/ Now Has On It’s Website A Special Section On Diversity And Equality (How Sincere Such Statements Are One Cannot Always Tell of Course Can Not Really Know In Advance).
On The Day of The Wind Rush Event A Husband And Wife Leadership Team From Croydon Sea Cadets Were There Representing’ Their Local Branch, Havin’ Been Granted Special Permission To Wear Their Uniforms By Headquarters They Looked Super Smart. They Work With Naval College Greenwich And They Told TheOrator.Press Magazine That For Them The Sea Cadets Are About Helpin’ Youngsters Embrace The Notion of Self-Discipline, Leadership And Resilience. These Are Qualities Codrie Cared Deeply About https://www.sea-cadets.org/croydon
Millie Small Was A Big Hit. As Was Mozart!
Mille Small Singing My Boy Lollipop. Just One of The Great Songs That Form Part of The Sound Track To The Life of A Great Man of Great Inspiration ~ Codrington Alban Walcott. Also Illustrated Here The Utterly Fabulous Kanneh-Mason Family of Classical Musicians, Classical Composer Samuel Coleridge Taylor,
The Book Also Has It’s Own Musical Soundtrack As Jeanette Recalls Music At The Time As Well As Crucial Policital Events At The Time Durin’ Her Upbrining. Includin’ The Civil Rights Movement, The Assination of Martin Luther King And President Kennedy And Enoch Powell’s Rivers of Blood Speech.
And That Soundtrack Also Includes Classical Music As Codrington Was A Fan of Mozart And A Musical Genius As He Could Play The Composer’s Music Havin’ Learnt It By Ear. He Was Gifted A Piano By An Impressed And Cultured Kindly Neighbour Who Was Aware of His Unique Ability. Thus Far Tale of This Exceptional Classical Music Talent Displayed By A Former-Caribbean-Navy-Recruit-Come-Worker-For-London-Transport Has Been Largely Untold. And There Are Two Black Men Before Him Who Were Classical Music Maestros. And A Number Who Have Come After. And Women Too
Before Were French Black Classical Composer Joseph Boulonge And English-African (Sierra Leone) Black Classical Composer Samuel Coleridge Taylor. Mozart (1720 – 1778) Was Born 25 Years Earlier Than Boulange And He Died 11 Years Earlier Than Him Too. In Fact Joseph Boulonge (1745 -1799) Is Sometimes Referred To As The Black Mozart. And Samuel Coleridge Taylor (1875-1912) Is Very Much Revered By The Chineke Orchestra (Britain’s First All Black Orchestra) Set Up By A Black Women, Chi Chi Nwanoku, In 2015, To Champion Change And Celebrate Diversity In Classical Music. https://chineke.org/chineke-orchestra/ And Now We Also Have The Amazin’ Kanneh-Mason Family Who Not Only Have A Piano In Their Home But An Entire Orchestra Made Up of Each Other. In Additon There Are Several Amazing Black Classical Music Players In The Brixton Chamber Orchestra. https://www.instagram.com/brixchamber/
Again, This Love For And Ability To Play Classical Music Highlights Codrington Alban Walcott Was An Amazin’ Man, Truly Ahead of His Time, Which Jeanette’s Book Now Makes Clear To The World.
A Beautiful Lady With Her Own Beautiful Legacy
Picture Gallery: Jeanette At Ascot On Ladies Day June 2022. She Went With A Group of Ladies From WGLA (Includin’ Angela Henriques Who Helped Organise This Refined Day Out). Des Was There Too Keepin’ An Eye On Things As He Always Does. Des And Jeanette On Windrush Day June 2022 At The WGLA Where Jeanette Delivered Her Special Readin’, Des And Jeanette As Young Lovebirds, Jeanette, The Young Natural Beauty Who Captured Des’s Heart And Was The Apple of Her Father’s Eye.
Jeanette Is Now The Matriach of The Family. She Has A Children Pattern Similar To Her Parents And The One She Grew Up In. She Has Three Sons And A Daughter. And Between Those Four Children They Have Given Her 5 Grandsons And 1 Granddaughter.
Plus With Her Brother’s Children She Has Eight Nieces And Nephews. And Is Also Not Just An Aunt But A Great-Aunt.
And As A Result of His Tenacity And Devotion To Family The Late Codrie Is Not Just A Grandfather But A Great, Great-Grandfather. Had He Not Fought For His Kids There Is No Doubt They Would Have Been Lost In The Social Care System, Which We Know Now, Due To The Revealations of Those Who Have Survived It, Back In Those Days (And Often Times Still Now) It Was Not Very Sociable or Very Carin’. Especially When It Comes To The Treatment of Black kids.
One of The Reasons This Story Leaves You Wantin’ More Is Because At The Very Beginning of The Book Mrs Thompson (Nee Walcott) Declares And Shares That The Two Most Influential Men In Her Life Have Been Firstly Her Father And Later Her Husband. This Sets The Reader Up For Good Snuggle Up And Settle Down Read About Two Powerful, Beautiful, Honourable Black Male Protagonists Within A Beautiful Black Family – A Dynamic Which Is Woefully Under Reported And Thus One We Are Hungry For.
So From The Very Outset Codrie’s Story Is Compellin’ And Engagin’ And The Writing Is So Good We Just Glide Through It, All The While Lookin’ Forward To The Second Story Beginining After The First One Comes To Its Natural Endin’. The Romance, The Laughs (Des Is Something of A Joker), The Marriage And The Kids. But No. Alas, Before You Know It, There Are No More Pages. The Book Literally Runs Out. The Feelin’ of Unfinished Business Is Frankly Overwhelmin’ (We’re Still Not Over It!). Just Like When One Is Consumin’ A Tasty Snack And Not Wantin’ It To End And The Finds Themselves Shakin’ The Packet To See If Anything More Comes Out – It Felt A Bit Like We Wanted To Do That With The Book.
But We Are “A Positive Magazine. For Positive People. By Positive People.” So All We Can Say Is “Bravo.” “More!” “More!” “More!” We Gave That Very Feedback To Author And With Great Humility She Modestly Admits To Holdin’ Back But Says This Was Because She Wanted The Book To Be About Her Father, Not About Her.
Ahh! That’s Sweet.
But It’s Too Late!
We Feel We Were Told of Two Great Men And It’s Only Right We Have Both of Them.
So Maybe Soon They’ll Be A Volumne Two. Meantime We Would Have To Conclude That This Book Reminds Us of A High Class, Cordon Blu or Michelin Star Meal. Well Presented, Absolutely Engagin’, Well Crafted, Rich, With Tasty Great Substance. But Somehow, Despite – or Because of All That – It Just Leaves You Wantin’ More.
And Yet…That’s Not Always A Bad Thing!
The Book “Codrington Alban Walcott – Through Their Children’s Eyes” Is Self-Published By Jeanette Thompson & Is Printed With Eco Friendly Printers Stanbury Chameleon. Price £10.00 For Further Details Contact TheOrator.Press Online Magazine (Contact Details Below).
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